A stunned pub landlord in Harrogate has discovered he is allergic to beer.
The beer sommelier and food journalist, who taste-tests beer as part of his job, had been miserable for months after suffering constant colds and stomach pains.
On the advice of his partner he took a home intolerance test and was stumped to find it was the yeast in the alcohol that was making him unwell.
“I couldn’t quite believe it!” he said. “I spend most of my waking life in pubs - as a beer sommelier, judging the establishments and their menus and I’m also a food journalist.
“I’d had cold-like symptoms for a quite a while, but I really didn’t think too much of it. I just learned to live with it.”
The sickness had been making him miserable and was taking its toll on his whole family as his coughing was keeping them up all night.
“I never thought that the symptoms I was experiencing could have been caused by food intolerance,” he said.
“When my children were younger I had them tested and it revealed that my daughter, 19, was intolerant to wheat and my son was intolerant to dairy products.
“It was just one of those things, I got the children tested for intolerances but neglected to do it for myself.”
The at-home YorkTest kit showed he suffered a severe reaction to yeast, which is found in many of the things he enjoyed every day.
“Bread, beer, wine - all kinds of alcohol in fact, which is dreadful considering I work in a pub for a living!
“Even when I’m not actually drinking socially, my work as a sommelier means that I have to attend tastings all the time. I was very worried and didn’t know how I’d be able to cope.”
He has struggled to cut yeast out of his diet completely but he is now learning to live with his allergy, switching vinegar for lemon juice and eating a lot of different foods.
“Curry ticks all the boxes!” he said, adding that he is spending a lot of time planning meals. “I’ve adopted a ‘sip, not sup’ approach to sampling drinks and foods.”